Ink and Paint

tta writing credit screencapYou know, I looked at this image a moment ago, one that I’ve seen probably a hundred times, and I just now realized — it’s no wonder people have gotten confused sometimes about which animated character I am, because if you assume they’re listing our names from left to right, I should be on the far left. They… kinda screwed that up.

Anyway, that’s me on the far right, in the green. (I did have a perm later on in high school, but back then my hair was straight.) Amy’s on the far left.

February 26, 1991:

I forgot to mention our animated alter egos — or, rather, I forgot to describe them.

Sarah looked like hair with glasses, Amy resembled Bette Midler, and I had no eyes.

So yeah. Nothing fires up teen insecurity like having a caricature of yourself broadcast on national TV. I mean, not that it’s a terrible likeness or anything, but…

Some random notes for the record: This was a time when tunic tops and leggings were in style, so coincidentally, I actually had an outfit in almost those shades of green. The wristwatch I’m wearing is, if I recall, a nod to the Bugs Bunny watch I wore back then. And (as I mentioned in this post), though there was talk at one point of letting us record our own voices, that didn’t happen, and we were voiced by three of the show’s regular voice actors.  (We weren’t very happy about those thick accents, either — though that’s another aspect of our characters that’s mellowed for me over time.)

One thing I was never able to get my hands on, though I wanted one even then, was a production cel of my character. (Here’s a Wikipedia link for those of you who aren’t up on animation terminology or are too young to remember when cels were still being used.)

At the time, we were told there had been some sort of problem with the cels from that episode and that as a result they would never be released for purchase. Before we were married, my husband, who’d been collecting Tiny Toons cels for a while, was able to get one from the show’s notebook-paper segment, but we never saw anything else offered through Warner Bros.’ regular sales channels.

Apparently whatever process was being used to transfer the drawings to the cels (instead of hand-inking them like they did in the old days) resulted in lines that gradually faded, and there was also some mention that there were no plans to release any cels with anyone’s likeness other than a regular Tiny Toons character (legal/copyright reasons, maybe?).

bbgh cel
Our production cel from “Buster and Babs Go Hawaiian.” (Note those faded lines on stick-Babs.)

All that said — I did happen to run across the image below several years ago on a Russian fan website. I don’t know if this was something they personally owned or just an image snagged from somewhere else online, but it certainly got my attention.

tta cel

It’s an interesting line, being able to say that you were once a cartoon character. I don’t know how many people get to say that who weren’t already celebrities being parodied or guest starring in one show or another. I’ve gotten older, as humans all do, but the cartoon version of me will be Thirteen forever. I like to think she’s still writing Tiny Toons scripts on that ’90s-era computer.

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